04 August 2023
Accurascale plans to raise money for Prostate Cancer UK with sales of 'special-edition' OO gauge Class 66 models.
A special edition model of 66769 in GBRf 'Prostate Cancer UK' livery has been launched during the Accurascale ‘take-over’ of Pete Waterman’s Making Tracks 3 event at Chester Cathedral. A working pre-production sample was seen in operation on the layout.
The limited-edition model is available for pre-order exclusively via the Accurascale website and will come in special presentation packaging, containing literature concerning prostate cancer and the services of Prostate Cancer UK. Delivery will be with the rest of the announced Class 66 first run models in Q1 2024.
Priced at £169.99 for DC/DCC ready and £259.99 for DCC sound fitted, proceeds of the model will be donated to Prostate Cancer UK with the aim of raising £10,000 for this cause.
One in eight men will develop prostate cancer in their lifetime, with men over 50 being at increased risk of suffering from the disease. Accurascale felt that 66769 was an essential locomotive to add to its Class 66 release programme, not only to raise funds for Prostate Cancer UK, but to raise awareness of this illness among their largest customer base.
Accurascale PR and Marketing Director Fran Burke stated: “We are absolutely delighted to work with Prostate Cancer UK and help raise £10,000 for this fantastic cause. Not only does 66769 look spectacular in both prototype and model form, but it carries a most important message that raises awareness of prostate cancer. As we see from model railway exhibitions we attend and indeed our own customer base, a significant portion of people in this hobby are males over 50, so hopefully this model can be enjoyed, but also help to raise awareness about getting checked out.
It is also a cause that means a lot to many of us on the Accurascale team, having seen loved ones suffer and indeed be lost to this dreadful illness. We sincerely thank Prostate Cancer UK, The LMA and of course GBRf for working with us on this model.”
66769 arrived as part of the penultimate delivery of Class 66s. Now being delivered from EMD’s Muncie plant in Indiana, it was unloaded from its transatlantic crossing at Newport in early December 2014. Originally an anonymous member of the Class 66 family, with the late configuration of parts originating from the US plant over its Canadian cousins, it set to work for GBRf.
In 2021, GBRf ran its annual Charity railtour and 66769 was selected to wear a special livery and be an integral part of the tour. The locomotive was unveiled in a black livery in connection with Prostate Cancer UK during August before becoming the flagship for the September tour.
Unusually it was dual named, in recognition of GBRF contracts manager, Paul Taylor, who was battling prostate cancer, and also the League Managers Association. The GBRF 2021 tour raised over £147,000 for Prostate Cancer UK. Sadly Paul Taylor lost his battle in 2022 and this locomotive serves a fitting tribute to him and continues to raise awareness of this cause.
66769 can be seen working all manner of trains across the length and breadth of the country, proudly still wearing its charity livery. While the livery adorning 66769 is certainly attractive and distinctive, it also carries a very important message in both prototype and model form.